Edge Canary: Conclusion

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

The bulk of this series was posted a while ago and I’ve continued using Edge Canary for a while now and thought it was time for a review.

Edge Canary is a fast browser; my main browser of choice is Vivaldi which I’ve always regarded as quite a fast browser, but my impression is that Edge Canary is faster on page loads. The feature set of Edge Chromium is continuing to progress; when I first used it, there was no dark mode, or themes, but these have since been intorduced although limited to light, dark and system.

Both browsers allow the use of the same extensions, but I’ll be sticking with Vivaldi as main browser. The main reason is that i prefer the behaviour and options available in Vivaldi.

In particular, you have a lot more control over tab behaviour in Vivaldi and when closing thr last tab Vivaldi will go back to the speed dial rather than closing as Edge does.

Edge Canary: Dark Mode

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

Microsoft have been adding dark modes to other applications and websites, but have unfortunately not done so with the new Edge. At the least I’d expect it to respect the Windows themes settings, if not to have a separate option within the browser.

The other way this might be handled is via a theme, but Edge doesn’t seem to support themes. I did try to install a theme from the Chrome Web Store and an error was produced.

Adding a dark mode or support for themes may be on the Microsoft roadmap for Edge, but I’ve not been able to find any information on this.

Edge Canary: Add Extension From Chrome Play Store

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

As mentioned in the last post, Microsoft have their own store for extensions, but Edge also supports the installation of extensions direct from the Google Play Store.

When in the Microsoft Store, a blue bar is displayed at the top of the screen; click the Allow extensions from other stores to enable download from the Google Play Store, or any other extension store:

Allow extensions from other stores

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Edge Canary: Add Extension From Microsoft Store

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

Being based on Chromium, the new Microsoft Edge includes the extension architecture. Microsoft have created their own Store for extensions.

To add extensions to Edge, click on the ellipsis button and select Extensions:

Add Extension

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Edge Canary: Installation

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

With Edge Canary downloaded, we can now install it. Do this by launching the file you downloaded:

Downloading

The “installer” isn’t actually a real installer, but kicks off another download.

Continue reading “Edge Canary: Installation”

Edge Canary: Download

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

Downloading Edge Canary is easily done from the Microsoft Edge Insider site by clicking the blue button for the desired channel; I am using the Canary Channel:

Download Canary Channel

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Edge Canary: Why Is Edge Being Remade In Chromium?

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

The Microsoft Edge browser launched a few years ago to replace Internet Explorer, bit is now itself being replaced with a Chromium based version. Microsoft announced this in December last year:

For the past few years, Microsoft has meaningfully increased participation in the open source software (OSS) community, becoming one of the world’s largest supporters of OSS projects. Today we’re announcing that we intend to adopt the Chromium open source project in the development of Microsoft Edge on the desktop to create better web compatibility for our customers and less fragmentation of the web for all web developers.

As part of this, we intend to become a significant contributor to the Chromium project, in a way that can make not just Microsoft Edge — but other browsers as well — better on both PCs and other devices.

The reason for the change appears to be the cost of maintaining their own rendering engine, which was the same logic applied by Opera a few years ago when they ditched their Presto engine and moved to Chromium (it also saw them dump 99% of the features of a web browser including bookmarks, which they have slowly been adding back).

This move by Microsoft means that the Internet is now going to be dominated by Chromium based browsers (Chrome, Edge, Opera, Vivaldi, Brave amongst others) with Firefox and Safari playing increasingly small supporting roles.

Despite talk by Microsoft of collaborating directly with Google and others for contributing to the open source project, there are concerns that the Internet will be heading back to the bad old days of IE6 where one browser dominated to the detriment of the Internet; Firefox has expressed concerns along these lines.

There have already been browser specific tags and CSS created as companies decide to interpret the HTML specification differently, or advance beyond what has been finalised. This has made developing for the Internet more complex as you need to code for different rendering engines. From one perspective, Microsoft using Chromium will simplify development, but long-term browser lock in and ignoring of standards becomes more likely.

Only time will tell if these concerns come to fruition; unfortunately, if they do, it will be too late and we will be locked into an Internet dominated and effectively controlled by one browser.

Edge Canary
What Is Edge Canary?
Why Is Edge Being Remade In Chromium?
Download
Installation
Add Extension From Microsoft Store
Add Extension From Chrome Play Store
Dark Mode
Conclusion

Edge Canary: What Is Edge Canary?

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

Microsoft Edge is currently in development and has two “channels” currently available:

  1. Dev Channel, which is updated weekly. The dev builds are the best representation of the improvements in the past week. They have been tested by the Microsoft Edge team, and are generally more stable than Canary.
  2. Canary Channel, which is updated daily. Want to see what Microsoft were working on yesterday? Canary will be released automatically almost every night to keep you up to date on Microsoft’s progress.

As development progresses, a Beta Channel, which updates every six weeks, will become available. This channel will be the most stable Microsoft Edge preview experience. It will be here soon, after we’ve had a chance to learn and improve in our other channels.

For this series, I’ve opted for the Canary Channel.

Edge Canary: Series Index

Edge CanaryMicrosoft have recently announced they are ditching the current version of their Edge browser in favour of a Chromium based browser. In this series, I am going to take a look at the Canary version of this new browser.

If you’re reading this post on azurecurve, the index below will automatically update, otherwise you need to check back on the original post.

Edge Canary
What Is Edge Canary?
Why Is Edge Being Remade In Chromium?
Download
Installation
Add Extension From Microsoft Store
Add Extension From Chrome Play Store
Dark Mode
Conclusion